Bill's Van Buren Softball Page

Last updated May 20, 2012
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VEE BEES '12


2012 Van Buren Vee Bees
CLICK HERE for pictures of past Vee Bees Teams

Left to Right: Coach Andrew Greene, Seniors Klarissa Ramirez, Samantha Lugo,
Angelica Rivera, and Natural Parker, Asst. Coach Bill Dee

Van Buren Falls to Clinton in First Round, 13-6

The #21 Van Buren Vee Bees challenged the #12 Clinton Governors several time during Wednesday's (5/16) PSAL "A" first round game before finally falling, 13-6, on a warm and pleasant afternoon at DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx. Van got off to a promising start in the top of the first inning against Clinton hurler #21 Maguette Fofana. A single by Samantha Lugo and a walk to Klarissa Ramirez set up second and third with one out. Fofana retired the next to batters to keep Van off the board. Two well executed sacrifice flies in the bottom of the first gave the Governors a 2-0 lead. Van went down quickly in the top of the second inning and got their first of many looks at super slow spot reliever #14 Martinez during the frame. Clinton added a run scored on a wild pitch in the bottom of the second to lengthen its lead to 3-0 after two. The Vee Bees were retired 1-2-3 in the top of the third inning and Clinton added a run on a groundout to pitcher Klarissa Ramirez in the bottom of the fourth to up its advantage to 4-0. Van Buren finally broke through in the top of the fourth inning. Ramirez led off with a single and Tiara Jourdan followed by being hit by a pitch (the first of two such incidents). One out later, Sade Scott reached on an error that scored Ramirez and Crystal Perez delivered a two run single to left that scored two runs. Fofana retired the next two batters, but Van had closed to within 4-3. Unfortunately, two big errors by the Vee Bees gave three runs right back in the bottom of the fourth. Clinton now led, 7-3. Neither team scored in the fifth inning. Van rallied again in the top of the sixth inning. RBI singles by Samantha Sanders and Perez  were followed by an RBI groundout by Maravic Canela. The Vee Bees now trailed just 7-6 and had seized the momentum from the Governors. But Van blew up again in the bottom of the sixth. Clinton scored six runs on four hits and two errors. Fofana and Martinez then retired the dispirited Vee Bees in order save for a last gasp two out single by Ramirez. She was stranded at third when Fofana recorded a strikeout to complete the 13-6 victory. Despite the disappointing finish, Van Buren had a good season with a winning 12-11 record and had made its first playoff appearance since 2008. Clinton now will travel to #5 Cardozo for a second round matchup on Friday. The game also capped off 20 years of the author following the team, and was likely my final season with the club owing to a "new family responsibility" that I will be welcoming in the Fall! The author would like to thank Coach Greene and all the girls for a successful and enjoyable season. Best wishes especially to Seniors Klarissa Ramirez, Samantha Lugo, Natural Parker, and Angelica Rivera. Check back in the next week for the 2012 nominees for the Hall of Heroes! Thanks again to all!

Playoff Time!

The Van Buren Vee Bees were seeded #21 in the upcoming 32 team A division playoffs. The Vee Bees will travel to the Bronx to face the #12 DeWitt Clinton Governors on Tuesday, May 15th at 4:00. Clinton finished second in Bronx A with a record of 10-6.
 

Lewis Routs Van Buren, 15-0, in Season Finale

The Van Buren Vee Bees completed their regular season with an inauspicious 15-0 loss to the Francis Lewis Patriots in a Queens AI game played Friday (5/11) at sunny Francis Lewis High School. Due to the absence of key players Diamond Berry and Natural Parker, many Vee Bees were forced to play out of position. Lewis pitcher #6 Pricilla Lallave retired Van in order in the top of the first inning. Three errors by Van's makeshift defense led to four Lewis runs in the bottom of the first. Tiara Jourdan and Samantha Sanders led off the top of the second inning with back to back singles. But a play at the plate helped the Patriots keep Van off the scoreboard. VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez then put up her only scoreless frame in the bottom of the second. Van went down quietly again in the top of the third inning. Lewis scored a run on a long sacrifice fly in the bottom of the third to take a 5-0 lead. Ramirez drew a walk with one out in the top of the fourth inning, but that was it for Van. Lewis then closed out the mercy rule win with ten runs in the bottom of the fourth, most of which came with two outs. The final stroke was an RBI single by Pricilla Lallave in her only plate appearance of the game. The 15-0 victory tied Lewis with Bayside for second place in Queens AI at 13-3. The Vee Bees finished their regular season with an 8-8 record in Q AI (12-10 overall). Van now awaits Saturday's A division playoff seeding meeting to see whom and where they will play!

Vee Bees Clinch Playoff Berth with 12-5 Win Over QHST

The Van Buren Vee Bees clinched their first playoff berth since 2008 with a 12-5 victory over the QHST Tigers in a Queens AI game played on a pretty Thursday (5/10) afternoon at Martin Van Buren High School. The game had been scheduled to be played at QHST's Alley Pond Park home field, but overnight rains affected field conditions. Van batted first as the Tigers were playing as home team. Van Buren exploded for seven runs on five hits in the top of the first inning. A two RBI double by Klarissa Ramirez was followed by RBI singles by Diamond Berry and Samantha Sanders. Ramirez then struck out all three QHST batters in the bottom of the first. QHST pitcher #14 Byrnes walked the first three Vee Bees in the top of the second inning. All three scored and Van led 10-0. QHST got one back on a one out grounder in the bottom of the second to make it 10-1 after two. A one out RBI single by Ramirez in the top of the third inning restored the ten run margin, at 11-1. The Tigers answered back with a run in the bottom of the third that made the score 11-2 after three. The top of the fourth inning saw Samantha Lugo steal home to make the score 12-2. But once again QHST battled back with two runs in the bottom of the frame. It was 12-4. Neither teams scored in the fifth inning. Van did not score in the top of the sixth inning and allowed the Tigers to tally another run in the bottom of the sixth on an RBI single by #16 Broughton that cut the Vee Bees' advantage to 12-5. Van Buren had two players forced out at home in a scoreless top of the seventh inning. But Ramirez retired QHST in order in the bottom of the seventh to preserve the 12-5 win. The victory raised the Vee Bees' Queens AI record to 8-7 (12-9 overall), clinching a spot in next week's playoffs. QHST fell to 1-13 in Q AI. Van Buren finishes its season Friday with a game at Francis Lewis at 4:30.

Van Buren Gains Crucial Win Over Harris, 14-4

The Van Buren Vee Bees took a huge step towards making the playoffs for the first time since 2008 with an emphatic 14-4 victory over the Townsend Harris Hawks in a Queens AI game played Tuesday (5/8) at rainy Martin Van Buren High School. TH's #22 Sierra led off the top of the first inning with a single and came around to score on some indifferent defense by the Vee Bees. The Hawks led 1-0. Van didn't require much intensity in the bottom of the first, either. TH pitcher #23 walked the first four batters she faced and Van was able to score three runs without a hit. The Vee Bees defense finally got jumpstarted in the top of the second inning, making the plays behind VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez to help her retire the Hawks in order. Back to back doubles by Ramirez and Diamond Berry highlighted a four run rally by the Vee Bees in the bottom of the second. Van led, 7-1. Harris replied with two runs on three infield hits in the top of the third inning to close to within 7-3. That was as close as Harris would get. After a scoreless VB bottom of the third and Ramirez's three quick strikeouts in the top of the fourth inning, Van Buren put the game away with six runs on three hits in the bottom of the fourth. The Vee Bees led 13-3 and had a chance to close out a mercy rule victory in the top of the fifth as the rain started to get heavier. Unfortunately, a one out walk to Dilan led to a two out RBI single by #16 Newman. Van still led, 13-4, but now would have to bat in the bottom of the fifth. They didn't bat for long. Samantha Lugo led off the frame with a walk off relief pitcher #18 Chen. She quickly stole second and scored on a single by Samantha Sanders. Van Buren had won the game, 14-4, by mercy rule! The win raised the Vee Bees Queens AI record to 7-7 (11-9 overall). Van needs just one more win to clinch a PSAL "A" tournament berth. Harris fell to 5-9 in Q AI. Van gets its chance to join the dance Thursday, when it visits QHST at 4:00.
 

Cardozo Shuts Down Vee Bees, 7-0

The Van Buren Vee Bees showed some pluck behind starting pitcher Diamond Berry Monday (5/7), but in the end they could not generate the runs needed to compete with the Cardozo Judges. Cardozo's pitcher #13 Yacavone allowed just one hit as the Judges defeated the Vee Bees, 7-0, in a Queens AI game played at Martin Van Buren High School. The game was a Cardozo home game because it was the makeup of Wednesday's rained out contest. Yacavone retired Van in order in the top of the first inning, setting the tone for most of the game. Berry, however, kept Van in the game by keeping the Judges off the board in the bottom of the first by allowing just one walk. Both sides were retired 1-2-3 in the second inning. Crystal Perez walked in the top of the third, but the Vee Bees remained scoreless. A two run double with one out by #21 Wehder capped off a four run bottom of the third for Cardozo. A 4-0 lead would be tough to overcome. In the top of the fourth inning Elyssa Lopez drew a walk, but that was it for VB. A two out two run single by #4 Phillips upped the Cardozo lead to 6-0 in the bottom of the fourth. Tiara Jourdan led off the top of the fifth inning with a base on balls, but Yacavone retired the next three batters. Van could not buy a hit. The Judges added a run in the bottom of the fifth inning to make the score 7-0. Natural Parker worked a one out walk in the top of the sixth and stole her way to third before being stranded there. Cardozo did not score in the bottom of the sixth inning, so Van was chasing 7-0 entering the top of the seventh. Diamond Berry led off the frame with a single to center that broke up the no hitter. That was all for VB, however, as Cardozo closed out the 7-0 win minutes later. Van Buren's Queens AI record falls to 6-7 (10-9 overall), While Cardozo remains in first place with a record of 11-2. Van Buren now faces a critical game Tuesday when it hosts Townsend Harris at 4:30. With a loss, Van would lose control of its own destiny in the race for the playoffs.

Van Buren Falls to Bowne, 5-3

The Van Buren Vee Bees suffered one of their more disappointing losses of the year Friday (5/4), a 5-3 decision to the Bowne Wildcats in a Queens AI game played at Martin Van Buren High School. The Vee Bees spotted the Wildcats a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning. A two run single by #40 Rios was the big hit. Van got one back in the bottom of the first when Samantha Ramjit walked and scored on an error with one out. It was 3-1, but Van left the bases loaded, the first of many missed opportunities on the afternoon. VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez struck out the side in order in the top of the second inning. Bowne pitcher Rios, however, sent down Van 1-2-3 in the bottom of the frame. Bowne loaded the bases with one out in the top of the third inning, but failed to score. A runner doubled off first base on a pop up helped kill off a nascent Vee Bees' rally in the bottom of the third. The first base umpire had sent VB first base coach Samantha Higueros off to fetch a ball just before the critical play. After Bowne was held scoreless in the top of the fourth inning, Van got another run back on an RBI single by Samantha Sanders that scored Samantha Lugo from third. It was 3-2. Bowne answered that in the top of the fifth with a two out RBI double to right by #25 Duran. The Wildcats led 4-2. The Vee Bees threatened in the bottom of the fifth, but an apparent run scoring single to center became a long groundout (score it 8-3) for a VB batter. It was another mistake that cost Van a much needed run. Neither team scored in the sixth, though the bottom of the VB order did well enough to insure that the top would come to the plate in the seventh. Unfortunately, a two out RBI single by Rios in the top of the seventh inning allowed Bowne to add a run and take a 5-2 advantage into the bottom of the frame. Ramjit singled with one out and scored on a groundout to short. It was now 5-3, but the game ended when the next batter was put out. Bowne had won, 5-3. The win raised Bowne's Queens AI record to 5-8, keeping their faint playoff hopes alive. Van Buren fell to 6-6 in Q AI (10-8 overall). Van's playoff hopes are more realistic, but only if they can come up with some more offensive punch Tuesday, when it hosts Townsend Harris (4-8 Q AI) at 4:30.

A Rainout and... Pizza

The Van Buren Vee Bees scheduled game at Cardozo Wednesday (5/2) was postponed because of rain, but not until the team was already at the field! Instread, Coach Greene treated the team to Pizza at a nearby restaurant. Not such a bad trip after all!

Vee Bees Outscore Jamaica, 20-10

The Van Buren Vee Bees' playoff chase continued Monday (4/30), but it was a little tough to watch. Pitching and defense went out the door as the Vee Bees had to outlast the pesky Jamaica Beavers, 20-10, in a Queens AI game played at sunny Martin Van Buren High School. It was a game that despite the high score was played at a very lethargic pace. Things got off to a bad start for Van in the top of the first inning. A one out triple to right by #6 Ragoonanan gave the Beavers a 1-0 lead. Van Buren got two runs back without a hit in the bottom of the first and fans hoped that it would be easier from there. It wouldn't be. Jamaica retook the lead with three runs in the top of the second inning. It was 4-2. Van rebounded in the bottom of the second with five runs, highlighted by a two run triple by Klarissa Ramirez that was followed by an RBI double by Tiara Jourdan. Van led 7-4 after two, but the scores kept coming. Jamaica got a run on a dropped third strike in the top of the third to cut Van's lead to 7-5. A two run homerun by Samantha Lugo was the big stroke of the Vee Bees' eight run bottom of the third. It was 15-5. Mercy? Not so fast. Jamaica got five runs on three hits in the top of the fourth inning, closing to within 15-10. Jamaica relief pitcher Ragoonanan then retired Van in order in the bottom of the fourth. Thankfully, VB pitcher Ramirez returned the favor in the top of the fifth to help settle the game down. Van Buren added three runs in the bottom of the fifth, increasing the margin to 18-10. Another scoreless inning by Ramirez in the top of the sixth gave Van a chance to finally close out the game in the bottom of the sixth. Samantha Ramjit led off with an infield single and scored on a Ramirez double. Ramirez then scored the winning run herself, fittingly, on a wild pitch. The 20-10 victory will not likely be fondly recounted, but it did serve to lift Van Buren's Queens AI record to 6-5 (10-7 overall). Jamaica falls to 0-12 in Q AI. Klarissa Ramirez, usually a star in the circle, on this day was one at the plate: She went three for five with two doubles, a triple, and four RBI's. She scored herself five times. Van hopes to make a better statement Wednesday, when it visits the 8-2 Cardozo Judges. First pitch is 4:30.

Van Buren Defeats Harris, 9-5

The Van Buren Vee Bees got off to a good start and held on for a 9-5 victory over the Townsend Harris Hawks in a Queens AI game played on a sunny Friday (4/27) afternoon at Martin Van Buren High School. The game was played as a home game for Harris on account of it having been at TH home game rescheduled from April 2nd. Van Buren therefore batted first. In the top of the first inning, Klarissa Ramirez delivered a one out RBI single to left that scored Natural Parker. Ramirez scored later herself on a wild pitch to give Van a 2-0 lead. Ramirez then took to the circle and shut out Harris in the bottom of the first. Van added a run in the top of the second on an infield single by Elyssa Lopez. It was 3-0. Harris got a runner to third in the bottom of the second, but failed to score. After Van Buren also went scoreless in the top of the third, Harris got a run on a bases loaded walk to #16 Newman. It was 3-1 after three. Van had its big inning in the top of the fourth. TH pitcher #23 Dilan walked the park, allowing Van to plate four runs without the benefit of a hit. It was now 7-1. Harris finally got a hit in the bottom of the fourth, but did not score. The Vee Bees added a run in the top of the fifth inning on a grounder by Samantha Ramjit on which the TH second baseman tagged second base despite the fact no runner was going there. It was 8-1. A two run single by #13 Taggart helped the Hawks score three runs in the bottom of the fifth to cut Van's advantage to 8-4. Samantha Sanders responded by singling home Tiara Jourdan from third with no outs in the top of the sixth inning. Van led 9-4. Harris did not score in the bottom of the sixth, nor did Van score in the top of the seventh inning. A triple by #18 Chan with two outs in the bottom of the seventh narrowed the deficit to 9-5, which would prove to be the final score. The victory raises Van Buren's Queens AI record to 5-5 (9-7 overall). Harris fell to 3-7 in Q AI. The Vee Bees's victory wasn't perfect, but kept Van in good position to make the playoffs. The next step will be Monday, when Van hosts Jamaica at 4:30.

Bayside Shuts Out Vee Bees, 8-0

The Van Buren Vee Bees battled hard Wednesday (4/25), but in the end were defeated, 8-0, by the first place Bayside Commodores in a Queens AI game played at Bayside Athletic Field. In the top of the first inning, Samantha Ramjit worked a walk off Bayside pitcher #5 Heidi Gomez. She advanced to third base on a groundout, but was stranded there. Gomez helped herself with a one out RBI single off VB hurler Klarissa Ramirez in the bottom of the first. Ramirez struck out the next two batters to hold the Commodores lead at 1-0. Van Buren went down in order in the top of the second inning. Five bloop singles by Bayside in the bottom of the second brought home five runs and lifted the Commodores to a 6-0 lead after two. Neither team scored in the third, fourth, or fifth  inning, though Van loaded the bases with no outs in the top of the fourth inning. Ramjit was forced out at home for the first out and Gomez struck out the next two Vee Bees to end the threat. Consecutive singles by Ramirez, Tiara Jourdan, and Samantha Lugo loaded the bases again for Van with one out in the top of the sixth. Another force at home and following strikeout added to the Vee Bees frustration as they failed to score once again. #12 Hafkin led off the bottom of the sixth inning with a long homerun to center. Bayside scored another run on an error and threatened to mercy  the Vee Bees before Ramirez got a pop up and a big strikeout to hold the score  at 8-0 after six. Marivic Canela managed a one out infield single for the Vee Bees in the top of the seventh, but Van did not score. Bayside emerged with the 8-0 win. Bayside remains in first place in Queens AI with a record of 9-1. Van fell to 4-5 in Q AI, 8-7 overall. All things considered, however, Van played a pretty decent game. The same effort should produce better results on Friday, when the Vee Bees host the Townsend Harris Hawks (3-6 Q AI) in a makeup game from April 2nd. First pitch is scheduled for 4:30. Harris will play as the home team at VB's field.

Rain, Rain...

The Van Buren Vee Bees Queens AI home game against the Bowne Wildcats scheduled for Monday (4/23) was postponed because of overnight rain. Next up is a visit to Bayside Wednesday at 4:00.

Newtown Blasts Van Buren, 28-6

Playing without start players Klarissa Ramirez and Diamond Berry, the Van Buren Vee Bees were routed by the Newtown Pioneers, 28-6, in a non league game played Saturday (4/21) morning at Newtown Athletic Field. Van got off to a nice start. Samantha Sanders' one out RBI single helped the Vee Bees to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning. The author will spare you the gruesome details of the rest of the inning, except to say that Newtown pounced on VB starter Samantha Higueros for eleven runs in the bottom of the first. Natural Parker ran her way around the bases for VB's only run in the top of the second inning. It was 11-4. The Pioneers added twelve more runs in the bottom of the second to stretch their lead to 23-4. Higueros drove in a run for Van in the top of the third with a single to cut the deficit to 23-5. Five more runs off VB reliever Tiara Jourdan put Newtown up, 28-5. Samantha Ramjit's RBI groundout in the top of the fourth inning proved to be the final run of the 28-6 mercy ruled debacle. The loss dropped Van Buren's overall record to 8-6. Van Buren hopes to field a more competitive side Monday, when it hosts the Bowne Wildcats in an important Queens AI  contest. First pitch, weather permitting, will be 4:30.
 

Lane Whips Vee Bees, 19-6

The Van Buren Vee Bees had to face the Lane Knights Wednesday (4/19)  in a crossover league game without star pitcher Klarissa Ramirez. The result was an ugly 19-6 loss played at Franklin K. Lane High School. Natural Parker led off the top of the first inning with a single and scored on a dropped third strike to Samantha Sanders. Van led 1-0, but left the bases loaded. Lane scored three runs off VB starter Diamond Berry in the bottom of the first to take the lead back, 3-1. Lane pitcher #11 Diaz shut out Van in the top of the second inning. Walks and troublesome fly balls helped Lane add four runs to their side of the scoreboard in the bottom of the second. The Knights led 7-1. Van Buren battled back in the top of the third inning. An RBI single by Tiara Jourdan and and RBI groundout by Sanders helped Van score five runs to cut Lane's lead to 7-6. Unfortunately, Lane exploded for twelve runs in the bottom of the third, if you can "explode" with just three hits. Van now trailed 19-6. Van was shut out in the top of the fourth inning, but finally kept Lane off the board in the bottom of the frame. Finally, Van Buren went down quickly in the top of the fifth, except for the final out, when Queen Latifa Spragg fouled the ball off her arm for strike two. She had to leave the game, forcing Elyssa Lopez to stand in to take the final strike that ended the game. The 19-6 loss left Van Buren with a 4-4 record in Queens AI (8-5 overall). Lane raised its Queens A2 mark to 4-3. The Vee Bees will try to rebound Saturday, when they visit Newtown for a non league game.

Van Buren, Down 7-1, Rally to Top Bergtraum, 8-7

The Van Buren Vee Bees got off to a poor start Tuesday (4/17), falling behind the Bergtraum Blazers, 7-1. But the team rallied to win the crossover league game, 8-7, on a sunny afternoon at Martin Van Buren High School. The Vee Bees' minds seemed to still be on Spring break and that, coupled with the late arrival of pitcher Klarissa Ramirez, caused problems at the start. The Blazers' slapped three singles in the top of the first inning to take an early 2-0 lead. Van went down quietly in the bottom of the first. Ramirez squashed a nascent two out rally in the top of the second inning to hold the line at 2-0. Van got one back in the bottom of the second when Diamond Berry was hit by a pitch to open the frame and scored on an error with one out. It was 2-1 after two. Van gave it right back in the top of the third inning, committing two errors that led to a Bergtraum run. The score was now 3-1. A runner caught off third base killed a VB scoring opportunity in the bottom of the third. Back-to-back-to-back doubles and another VB error allowed the Blazers to score four more runs in the top of the fourth inning. It would have been worse except for a great throw from Kaitlin Dyal in right Tiara Jourdan at third via a relay from second baseman Samantha Lugo. The throw was just late, but the baserunner came off the base and was tagged for the second out. This play lifted Van Buren's spirits and proved to be the turning point of the game. However, for the time being Bergtraum led 7-1. In the bottom of the fourth a leadoff double by Jourdan was followed by a single by Lugo. Both runners scored on a single by Samantha Sanders. Van had cut the Blazers' lead to 7-3. Ramirez, now in a great rhythm in the circle, retired Bergtraum in order in the top of the fifth inning. The Vee Bees then came all the way back in the bottom of the fifth. An RBI single by Berry highlighted a four run frame. It was 7-7. Bergtraum threatened in the top of the sixth, but was stymied when #21 Correa was thrown out trying to steal home. It remained 7-7. The bottom of the sixth would prove decisive. Natural Parker turned a one out shot into right field into a triple against the timid Blazers' defense. Samantha Ramjit followed with a single to center that brought home what would be the game winning run. Van left two on base in the inning and would have to protect an 8-7 lead in the top of the seventh. And protect it they did as Ramirez got Bergtraum's batters to ground out three straight times to close out the 8-7 victory. The thrilling come from behind win raised Van Buren's Q AI record to 4-3 (8-4 overall). Bergtraum fell to 0-7 in Manhattan A. Van Buren needs to get off to a much faster start Thursday when it visits Lane. The Knights are 3-3 in Queens A2. First pitch is scheduled for 4:30.
 

Undermanned Vee Bees Fall at Forest Hills, 22-3

It was a Friday (4/13) to forget for the Van Buren Vee Bees. The shorthanded Vee Bees were walloped, 22-3, by the Forest Hills Rangers in a non league game played at sunny Forest Hills High School. Starters Klarissa Ramirez and Diamond Berry were unavailable, as were a couple of players who were late arriving to the field for the game. Despite this, Van Buren grabbed an early lead in the top of the first inning on a two out two run home run by Samantha Higueros. But VB fans could have "turned off their sets" right there. Pitcher Higueros hit four batsmen during a six run bottom of the first. The score was 6-2. A long three run home run to left helped FH add six more runs in the bottom of the second inning. It was 12-2. Van got one back in the top of the third inning when Tiara Jourdan singled home Natural Parker with one out. Van trailed, 12-3. Two more runs for FH in the bottom of the third increased the Rangers' lead to 14-3. Eight more runs in the bottom of the fourth, the last three of which came on a walk-off home run by FH #3, finished off the 22-3 "mercy rule" victory for the Rangers. Not much else to say. Van now 7-4 overall heading into Tuesday's 4:30 crossover league game at home against the Bergtraum Blazers.

Berry Walk Off Single Beats Forest Hills, 9-8

It took a walk off RBI single by Diamond Berry for the Van Buren Vee Bees to edge the Forest Hills Rangers, 9-8, in a non league game played on a sunny Wednesday (4/11) morning at Martin Van Buren High School. It was a close contest that went back and forth throughout. A dropped third strike and three walks by VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez allowed the Rangers to take a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning. In the bottom of the first, Natural Parker led off with a walk and scored on a wild pitch. An RBI groundout by Tiara Jourdan also brought home a run to cut the deficit to 3-2 after one. Both sides were retired in order in the second inning. Catcher Samantha Ramjit threw out a runner trying to steal third to end the scoreless top of the third inning. Van scored twice in the bottom of the third to take a 4-3 lead. Two errors by the Vee Bees in the top of the fourth inning with two outs helped the Rangers add three runs in that frame and put FH back in front, 6-4. FH pitcher Kayla Artz struck out three straight in the bottom of the fourth to maintain the lead. The fifth inning was scoreless. A one out single brought home an unearned run to increase FH's lead to 7-4 in the top of the sixth inning. Back to back doubles by Ramirez and Berry sparked Van's two run bottom of the sixth. But Van still trailed, 7-6. A HBP in the top of the seventh set up Artz's two out RBI single that increased the Rangers' advantage to 8-6. Van Buren needed a rally in the bottom of the seventh. Queen Latifa Spragg was HBP to start the comeback. Next, Parker walked. Ramjit then grounded out to short, scoring Spragg. Parker scored on a wild pitch and Ramirez reached on an error. That brought up Diamond Berry. Berry then lined a single to center that scored Ramirez from third with the winning run. Berry's heroics gave Van Buren a 9-8 victory that increased the Vee Bees' record to 7-3. The two teams will battle again Friday at Forest Hills at 9:45.

Van Buren Outlasts Edison, 16-15

It was an ugly game on a beautiful day. The Van Buren Vee Bees needed a dropped third strike with a runner on third base to edge the Edison Inventors, 16-15, in a non league game played at Martin Van Buren High School. The game was shortened to five innings by mutual consent. However, there was nothing "short" about it: It took 2 1/2 hours to play! Coach Greene started Sam Higueros in the circle against the "B" division Inventors. The rookie hurler struggled in the top of the first inning, walking 10 batters and allowing 9 runs in 2/3 of a frame. Diamond Berry came on to get the final out ( a runner caught stealing), but Van trailed 9-0. The Vee Bees got four runs back in the bottom of the first, the big hit an RBI single by Tiara Jourdan. Another "caught stealing" helped Berry to a quick, scoreless top of the second inning. Wild pitches and errors helped Van score five times in the bottom of the second to tie the score at 9-9. The tying run came home when Samantha Lugo came home from third in the confusion caused by Samantha Sanders' attempt to steal an already occupied second base. Van might have tallied more except the coaches had agreed on a maximum of five runs each inning after the first. Berry held down Edison again in the top of the third inning. Walks and wild pitches gave Van three more runs in the bottom of the third. The Vee Bees led 12-9. The teams traded runs in the fourth and Van looked in good shape entering the top of the fifth ahead 13-10. Unfortunately, Coach Greene's cast of substitutes struggled in the field, allowing five runs. Edison led 15-13! Coach Greene returned the starters to the lineup in the bottom of the fifth needing two runs to stay alive. Back to back one out RBI singles by Samantha Ramjit and Jourdan tied the score, and Jourdan came home fittingly on a dropped third strike on Samantha Sanders that was thrown to first base by the catcher. Van Buren had survived, 16-15. The win raises Van Buren's overall record to 6-3. Weather permitting, the Vee Bees will host Forest Hills Wednesday at 10:00.

Vee Bees Pull Away from QHST, Win 10-1

The Van Buren Vee Bees got off to a bit of a slow start Wednesday (4/4), but gradually pulled away to defeat the QHST Tigers, 10-1, in a Queens AI game played at sunny Martin Van Buren High School. VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez and QHST hurler #14 Byrnes matched each other by pitching two shutout innings to open the contest. Ramirez kept a clean slate in the top of the third inning after escaping a second and third with one out situation. Ramirez then got Van on the scoreboard in the bottom of the third with a one out two run double. She later scored on a wild pitch to give the Vee Bees a 3-0 lead after three. Ramirez sent QHST down in order in the top of the fourth inning. A leadoff single by Crystal Perez was followed by two errors, a hit batsman, and several wild pitches that allowed Van to add three more runs in the bottom of the fourth, increasing Van's advantage to 6-0. After a scoreless top of the fifth inning, Van got an RBI single by Samantha Sanders and two other runs to increase the lead to 9-0. VB had just missed ending the game on the "mercy rule". QHST got one back in the top of the sixth inning on an RBI double by #2 Shuster with one out. It was 9-1. A Samantha Lugo RBI groundout scored Diamond Berry in the bottom of the sixth. Van just missed mercy again, now up 10-1. Ramirez closed out the game with a scoreless top of the seventh. The 10-1 victory raised Van's Queens AI record to 3-3 (5-3 overall). QHST fell to 1-6 in Q AI. Ramirez allowed just one earned run on five hits and tallied eight strikeouts. Vee Bees' fans were thrilled to see former players Nicole Ramos and Kyara "Peru" Forero at the game! Spring break is upon us and Coach Greene has announced four non league games over the vacation. The first will be Monday at home against the Edison Inventors. First pitch is 10:30.

Game at Townsend Harris Rained Out

The Van Buren Vee Bees scheduled Queens AI game against the Townsend Harris Hawks Monday (4/2) was postponed due to poor field conditions at Kissena Park Field #5 following the overnight rain. The game was rescheduled for Friday, April 27th at Van Buren at 4:30. The Vee Bees next game is Wednesday at home against QHST. First pitch is 4:30.
 

Van Buren Falls to Lewis, 11-0

The Van Buren Vee Bees struggled in the field early in Friday's (3/30) Queens AI game against the Francis Lewis Patriots, with the result being an 11-0 loss to the division leaders on a sunny afternoon at Martin Van Buren High School. In the top of the first inning an error on a ground ball with one out allowed #12 Esmeral to reach base and she scored on a sacrifice fly to left to give Lewis a 1-0 lead. FL starter #6 Priscilla Lallave struck out the first two batters in the bottom of the first while retiring Van in order. Things got out of hand for VB in the top of the second inning. A dropped third strike and another error helped Lewis tack on  six more runs in the frame to up the Patriots' advantage to 7-0. #6 Lallave helped herself with a double in the inning. Samantha Lugo singled in the bottom of the second, but Van did not score. VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez and the VB defense settled down after that, but Van's offense could not get the Vee Bees back into the contest. The third and fourth innings were scoreless. A two out two run double by Esmeral highlighted a four run top of the fifth inning that put Lewis up 11-0 and put Van in the position of needing two runs to avoid "mercy" in the bottom of the fifth. Angelica Rivera reached base on an error with two outs, but Lallave retired the next batter to preserve the 11-0 victory. The win raises Lewis' Queens AI record to 5-0, while Van falls to 2-3 in Q AI (4-3 overall). Van Buren takes the weekend off before returning to action Monday against the Townsend Harris Hawks at 4:00 at Kissena Park Field #5.

Early Mistakes Doom Vee Bees in 7-0 Loss to Cardozo

The Van Buren Vee Bees have been much more competitive this season, especially against the traditional powers. Competitive enough to find that just a couple of mistakes can be the difference in a close game against a strong opponent. Several early miscues were decisive Wednesday (3/28) in the Vee Bees' 7-0 loss to Cardozo in a Queens AI game played on a pleasant afternoon at Martin Van Buren High School. Van's defense got off to a poor start in the top of the first inning, with a dropped throw to first and several mental mistake leading to two Cardozo runs. A big inning was averted thanks mostly to centerfielder Crystal Perez, who made a great grab of a line drive by #34 Roldan and doubled a baserunner off second base. Van was able to escape the inning down just 2-0. The Vee Bees stung a few pitches by Cardozo pitcher #13 Yacavone, but the Judges fielders came through and CHS shut out Van in the bottom of the first. Van Buren added to its woes in the top of the second inning, committing two errors that led to two more 'Dozo runs. It was 4-0. Tiara Jourdan stroked a leadoff single in the bottom of the second, but was caught stealing and the next two batters were retired. VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez struck out two batters as the Vee Bees finally kept Cardozo scoreless in the top of the third inning. Van Buren failed to score in the bottom of the third despite a single and exciting stolen base by ninth place hitter Sade Scott. Neither team scored in the fourth inning. Despite two nice defensive plays by VB to get the lead runner, Cardozo added two runs in the top of the fifth on a two out two run single by #77 Shehi. Cardozo led 6-0. Van went down in order in the bottom of the fifth. The sixth inning was scoreless. One more error led to one more unearned run for the Judges in the top of the seventh that increased the 'Dozo lead to 7-0. Jourdan reached third base with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, but failed to score. Cardozo won the game, 7-0. The win raised the Judges' Queens AI record to 3-1, while Van fell to 2-2 in Q AI (4-2 overall). VB pitcher Ramirez allowed just six hits and three earned runs for Van, despite not being 100% physically. The Vee Bees realize that will have to play smart all seven innings Friday, when they host 4-0 Lewis. First pitch is 4:30.

Van Buren Wins Ugly, 8-4, Over Jamaica

Sometimes you've got to win ugly, and that's exactly what the Van Buren Vee Bees did Monday (3/26) afternoon at Jamaica High School, where the Vee Bees allowed the Beavers to keep it close for most of their Queens AI game. The contest was played in very sunny but very windy and chilly conditions. Van Buren batted first as the road team. After allowing a leadoff walk to Natural Parker, Jamaica pitcher #13 Conde retired the next two batters. It seemed that the Beavers might keep Van off the scoreboard, but after a walk to Diamond Berry, Tiara Jourdan drilled a two run single. That gave Van a 2-0 advantage and that was important because the Vee Bees would struggle on offense the whole afternoon. Conde helped her cause with a two out RBI infield single that reduced the deficit to 2-1 after one inning. Neither team scored in the second inning and both teams seemed flat and lacking energy. Van's malaise continued into the top of the third inning when Conde struck out the side in order. An error set up a one out RBI single up the middle by #22 Berry that tied the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the third. Van regained its lead in the top of the fourth inning as Jourdan led off with a single, stole second, and score on the indifferent defensive reaction to the overthrow. Samantha Ramjit reached third on the same play and stole home on a similar defensive lapse a short time later. It was 4-2 VB. In the bottom of the fourth, VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez found herself facing a second and third situation with two outs and only a fine catch by rightfielder Samantha Sanders kept the Beavers from tying the game again. The Vee Bees gained some breathing room with three runs in the top of the fifth. An RBI single by Jourdan and a bases loaded walk by Crystal Perez provided the spark. Van led 7-2. Ramirez hurled a scoreless bottom of the fifth. Van Buren tallied its last run in the top of the sixth inning when Parker came home on a dropped third strike that caused a throw to first. That made it 8-2 VB. Jamaica did not score in the bottom of the sixth and Van was held scoreless in the top of the seventh. Jamaica, however, would not go quietly.  The Beavers scored two runs in the bottom of the seventh on a two run home run by Berry that tipped off of Parker's glove at shortstop before rolling past the centerfielder. Van Buren finally won the game, 8-4. It wasn't a game that the Vee Bees will fondly recall, but it did lift their Queens AI record to 2-1 (4-1 overall). Jamaica fell to 0-3 in Q AI. Ramirez allowed four runs on five hits, but added 11 strikeouts to her resume. Van Buren sees inclined so far this season to play up to (or down to) the level of their opponents. That means Van is due to raise its game Wednesday when it hosts Cardozo (2-1). First pitch is 4:30.

Vee Bees Test Bayside Before Losing, 11-1

The Van Buren Vee Bees gave the Bayside Commodores all they could handle for four innings Friday (3/23), but lost in the end, 11-1, in a Queens AI game played on a mild afternoon at Martin Van Buren High School. Van Buren entered the game feeling confident after its win over Bowne and got off to a fine start. VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez retired the first two batters in the top of the first before ending a bases loaded threat by striking out #14 Ho to end the inning. Van Buren took a surprising lead in the bottom of the frame. Natural Parker led off with a walk and scored on two overthrows that accompanied her steal of second base. Ramirez followed with a one out single and Diamond Berry with a walk before Bayside pitcher #5 Heidi Gomez retired the next two batters. Van Buren had a 1-0 lead after one inning. Ramirez and Gomez matched each other by throwing  zeroes on the scoreboard for the next three innings. Coach Greene and Vee Bees' fans began to believe that Van Buren might finally break its 20 game losing streak against Bayside that dates from 2001. During that stretch Gomez retired the Vee Bees in order each time, while Ramirez needed to escape a couple of scoring threats with the help of timely strikeouts and solid play from centerfielder Crystal Perez. Van Buren's luck ran out in the top of the fifth inning. back-to-back-to-back doubles by #7 Moy, #24 Perno, and Gomez  brought in two runs and later RBI singles by Ho and #12 Hafkin gave the Commodores a 4-1 lead after four and a half. Gomez retired the Vee Bees 1-2-3 in the bottom of the fifth to maintain the advantage. A leadoff walk to Moy led to another run for Bayside in the top of the sixth inning. Van Buren did not score in the bottom  of the sixth, but singles by Ramirez and Berry ended a streak of 16 in a row retired by Gomez. The Vee Bees unraveled a bit in the top of the seventh inning, allowing six more runs that made the score a much less attractive 11-1. Gomez then closed out the game by sitting down three straight batters  in the bottom of the seventh to preserve the 11-1 win. The victory evened Bayside's Queens AI mark at 1-1. Van Buren fell to 1-1 in Q AI, 3-1 overall. The losing streak , of course, is now 21. Despite the heavy linescore, Van Buren played very well outside of their lack of offense in the face of Bayside's pitching. Van Buren expects a much better result on Monday, when it travels to 0-2 Jamaica for a 4:00 start.

Van Buren Beats Bowne, 14-9, in Queens AI Opener

The Van Buren Vee Bees got their league schedule off to a successful start with a 14-9 victory over the Bowne Wildcats in a game played on a cloudy Wednesday (3/21) afternoon at John Bowne High School. The Vee Bees competed in plain gray t-shirts with handwritten numbers because their new uniforms were not yet ready. Van Buren got off to a fast start in the top of the first inning. An RBI double by Diamond Berry was followed with a big two run double by Samantha Sanders, highlighting a five run frame. Bowne got one back in the bottom of the first on a one out single by #22 Guevara. Berry singled home Crystal Perez in the top of the second inning to make the score 6-1. Two errors in the bottom of the second gave that run back and Bowne trailed 6-2. Natural Parker smashed a two out RBI single that capped off a three run top of the third inning. Van led 9-2. A leadoff double by #11 Frankel led to two Wildcats' runs that closed the gap to 9-4 in the bottom of the third. Van was shut out in the top of the fourth and Bowne got another run back in the bottom of the inning. It was 9-5. Leadoff singles by Tiara Jourdan and Samantha Ramjit sparked a three run top of the fifth inning for Van. It was 12-5. Unfortunately, poor fielding let Bowne score yet again in the bottom of the fifth to make it 12-6. Neither team scored in the sixth as VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez finally got a 1-2-3 inning. Another RBI by Sanders (this on a single) with no outs helped give VB a two run top of the seventh and some breathing room. It was 14-6. But poor defense struck Van again in the bottom of the seventh and the game seemed in doubt when #10 Navarro crushed a triple to deep centerfield with two on and no outs. Both runners scored, giving the Wildcats three for the inning, but Navarro was thrown out at the plate by Jourdan when she tried to score on the overthrow. That play seemed to quell Bowne's momentum and Ramirez was able to shut out the Wildcats the rest of the way and allow Van to hold on for the 14-9 win. The victory gives the Vee Bees a 1-0 record in Queens AI and a 3-0 record overall for the first time since 2006. Bowne is 0-1 in Q AI. Samantha Sanders was the big star on offense, going 3 for 4 with 3 RBI. Ramirez was solid again in the circle, allowing just four earned runs on eight hits, twelve strikeouts and just two walks. Next up for Van a Friday home game against the always tough Bayside Commodores. First pitch is 4:30.

Richmond Hill Game Rained Out

The non league game against Richmond Hill scheduled for Friday, March 16, was postponed because of rain. No make up date has been announced. The Vee Bees will begin league play Wednesday, March 21st, at John Bowne. First pitch is 4:30.

Vee Bees Top Richmond Hill, 13-5

The Van Buren Vee Bees' promising start to the season continued Thursday (3/15) with a 13-5 non league win over the Richmond Hill Lions on a cloudy and cool afternoon at Martin Van Buren High School. RH was playing the game as the home team because the team will meet again Friday at the same site. Natural Parker led off the top of the first inning with an infield single, but was stranded at third when RH pitcher #17 Montero retired the next three Vee Bees. VB pitcher Klarissa Ramirez also got off to a strong start in the circle, striking out the first two batters she faced in a scoreless bottom of the first. Van got on the board in the top of the second inning. Samantha Lugo led off with a walk and scored on a single by rookie Tiara Jourdan. VB led 1-0. Ramirez struck out the side to maintain the margin in the bottom of the second. Van added three runs in the top of the third inning. Crystal Perez provided a one out RBI single before Diamond Berry crushed a long two-out two-run home run to left field that put Van up 4-0. RH got two runs back in the bottom of the third to cut VB's lead to 4-2. Van Buren got the cushion it needed with a five run top of the fourth inning that was capped off with an RBI double stroked by Ramirez. The Vee Bees led 9-2, though the Lions scored twice in the bottom of the fourth to close the gap to 9-4. Jourdan completed a three for three, two RBI debut with and RBI double in the top of the fifth that brought home the first of three runs that inning. Van led 12-4. Ramirez sent RH down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the fifth before Van added their final run in the top of the sixth on a one out RBI grounder to third by Queen Latifa Spragg. Van led 13-4. Diamond Berry came on to pitch in the bottom of the sixth and allowed one run before the game ended on account of darkness. The Vee Bees won, 13-5. Berry and Jourdan provided most of the offensive power for Van, while Ramirez was impressive in the circle. She allowed just two earned runs in five innings, striking out ten and walking just one. She also allowed just four hits. Van Buren (2-0) host these same Richmond Hill Lions on Friday at 4:30.

Van Buren Opens 2012 Season with 9-8 Win Over QHST

The Van Buren Vee Bees opened their 2012 season Tuesday (3/13) with a 9-8 victory over the Queens High School of Teaching Tigers in a non league game played at Martin Van Buren High School. Van led 9-3 before holding on for the 9-8 win. Senior pitcher Klarissa Ramirez led VB from the circle, gaining her first win of the new campaign. The Vee Bees host Richmond Hill on Thursday at 4:30.
 
 

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